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WVU set to face another stellar punter

September 27, 2011
By John Wickline - Staff Writer , The Inter-Mountain

Punters are often the last guy coaches want to see step onto the field, as it usually means the offense has stalled.

But Bowling Green punter Brian Schmiedebusch may be the last guy West Virginia University football coach Dana Holgorsen wants to see.

The sophomore is averaging a nation's best 49.1 yards per punt, and the other 10 guys running down the field are allowing the returner to move less than four yards after catching the football.

"They're No. 1 in the nation, and we're like 120," Holgorsen said during Monday's Big East Conference teleconference. "I don't know if we can win the punting ball. They're No. 1 for a reason.

"It's going to be interesting to see that battle."

WVU, 3-1 and ranked 22nd in the latest Associated Press poll, saw itself pinned behind its own 10-yard line eight times in the loss to Louisiana State on Saturday, mainly because of the performance of LSU punter Brad Wing.

Now a statistically better punter will be coming to Morgantown for the 3:30 p.m. game Saturday, which will be broadcast on the Big East Network.

Schmiedebusch was named the national punter of the week for his performance against Wyoming. Eight of his 17 punts on the season for 3-1 Bowling Green have been downed inside the 20. He has punt of 81 yards this season, and he has kicked the ball 50 yards or more eight times.

The Big East Conference placed WVU quarterback Geno Smith on its Honor Roll for his performance in the 47-21 loss to LSU, making it the fourth straight week Smith as received acclaim from the conference executives.

"Geno is who makes us go offensively," Holgorsen said. "You have to credit the offensive line because Geno didn't get hit much. He knows how to play the game, and he has a never-give-up attitude."

 
 

 

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